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It’s been an incredible year for Irish writers. Some of the most heartwarming, hilarious and honest reads have been released this year, including Once, Twice Three Times an Aisling by Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen and Overcoming by Vicky Phelan with Naomi Linehan.

We have teamed up with the wonderful people at the An Post Irish Book Awards to give one bookworm the dream prize. We have six of the best Irish fiction books up for grabs and you’re in for a real treat. All of these books have been nominated for the National Book Tokens Popular Fiction Book of the Year category.

The books include:

Once, Twice, Three Times an Aisling – Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen (Gill Books)

Filter This – Sophie White (Hachette Ireland)

Postscript – Cecelia Ahern (HarperFiction)

When All is Said – Anne Griffin (Hodder & Stoughton)

Schmidt Happens – Ross O’Carroll-Kelly (Penguin Ireland)

Seven Letters – Sinéad Moriarty (Penguin Ireland)

To be in with a chance of winning this incredible prize then head over to our Instagram account here

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The An Post Irish Book Awards celebrate and promote Irish writing to the widest range of readers possible.

Each year it brings together a huge community passionate about books – readers, authors, booksellers, publishers and librarians – to recognise the very best of Irish writing talent across sixteen categories, including Novel of the Year, Children’s, Cookery, Crime Fiction, Popular Fiction, Nonfiction, Sports, Short Story, Poetry, Teen and Young Adult and Irish Language.

May the odds be ever in your favour.

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Deliveroo has launched a cash golden ticket giveaway with WOWburger Tallaght to celebrate the restaurant joining the delivery app.

gene wilder favorite films GIF

Willy Wonka and Charlie are 100 percent GAGGIN' for this prize, that's for sure. Deliveroo will offer two WOWburger customers €500 Golden Tickets this weekend, out of pure generosity. We heart.

All you have to do is order a tasty burger from the Tallaght restaurant via Deliveroo; It literally couldn't be any easier. Imagine getting mouth-watering grub and 500 coins simultaneously? What a day.

After receiving their golden ticket, winners will be instructed to contact Deliveroo, who will deliver the cash straight into the customer’s bank account. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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General Manager of Deliveroo Ireland, Michael Healy, said; 

WOWburger is one of Dublin’s most beloved restaurants, offering the best of the best in great-tasting burgers, not to mention their amazing sides. 

“We want to welcome this amazing restaurant to the platform, a brilliant addition to our new zone in Tallaght, by offering the chance of a special treat to those who indulge in their delicious menu on Deliveroo,” he added.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The giveaway takes place from today, with the first winner selected this week, and the second winner chosen next week.

To be eligible for the amazing cash prize, WOWburger Tallaght must be ordered from the Deliveroo app or website. 

Feature image: Instagram/@wowburgerirl

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The tackiest night in Irish television is upon us once more. 

Every year, we send an act to some European capital to sing and dance onstage alongside the rest of the EU in the hopes of taking home the trophy and hosting the same thing the following year in our capital. 

We've won the thing a record-breaking seven times (and three years back-to-back which is INSANE) and although the last few years have seen our luck dissipate, we still enjoy a good Eurovision party every May.

This year, however, isn't like any other.

The 64th edition of the competition is set to take place this Saturday in Tel Aviv, Israel.  

Image result for eurovision

So what exactly is the boycott and why is it happening?  

It centers on Israel's alleged human rights abuses towards the Palestinian people, with Gaza-based Palestinian Artists Association has since accused Israel of using the event to “perpetuate oppression, promote injustice or whitewash a brutal apartheid regime”.

There has been a petition signed by many famous faces who say that by letting Israel host the Eurovision, we are supporting the violation of Palestinian human rights.

Among those who have signed it are band Wolf Alice, Peter Gabriel, Roger Waters while a counter-letter has been penned by Stephen Fry, Sharon Osbourne, Marina Abramovic, and Scooter Braun.

The letter states that ''Spirit of togetherness is under attack by those calling to boycott Eurovision 2019 because it is being held in Israel, subverting the spirit of the contest and turning it from a tool of unity into a weapon of division.''

The crux of the whole thing boils down to the fact that those who are for the competition to go ahead are saying that they are so because the contest is not supposed to be political in any way and they are not performing for politicians.

Instead, they are for putting on a show for the people, the audience, for entertainment and unity.

It will be broadcast by both RTE and BBC and both stations have issued statements to this effect. 

RTE said, ''As a long-running non-political, entertainment event, the Eurovision Song Contest (ESC) is designed to bring audiences and countries together. RTÉ is confident that the European Broadcasting Union and the host broadcaster will take all necessary steps to safeguard the non-political character of the event throughout the organization of the competition.''

BBC meanwhile echoed a similar sentiment.

They said, ''The competition has always supported the values of friendship, inclusion, tolerance, and diversity and we do not believe it would be appropriate to use the BBC’s participation for political reasons. Because of this, we will be taking part in this year’s event. The host country is determined by the rules of the competition, not the BBC.”

The irony here is why their point might be seen as acceptable where the host country is involved in minor conflict or political unease when it comes to the case in Israel, it's not the same.

Rory Cowen of Mrs. Browns' Boys' has been vocal on social media and tv in his support for the contest taking place in Tel Aviv and he tweeted, ''We were there in Russia, in Turkey, in Azerbaijan, in the UK, etc. We went to perform in many countries that were involved in conflicts. It would be discriminatory to single out just one not to go to'' to which he received a reply saying, ''Israel is not involved in a conflict. The Israeli regime is involved in the systematic extermination of the Palestinian people. Quite a different thing altogether.''

Ireland's entrant Sarah McTernan is getting ready to take to the stage for tomorrow nights second semi-final.

The Clare native, who will sing 22, had to hit back at the massive backlash she has gotten for going to Tel Aviv.

She said, ''Everybody has their opinion on the issue, which is totally fine, but we’re about the music, and about spreading the love and the music, and that’s what Eurovision is about. We’re here, and we’re loving it.''

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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There is a really strong for-against that appears to be happening in the media.

Madonna, who is set to perform at the live final this Saturday, is determined to perform despite the loud callings for a boycott.

The numbers are low for fans travelling from Ireland to Tel Aviv – Diarmuid Furlong, president of Ireland’s Eurovision Fan Club confirmed that there would only be 30.

And overall, there will only be 5,000 or so foreign fans in Tel Aviv, much less than hoped for by organisers…these figures speak for themselves.

What will you be doing this Saturday – tuning in or blocking it out?

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Sea Sessions Surf and Music Festival has managed to get EVEN BIGGER this year; already boasting Norwegian pop sensation Sigrid, Two Door Cinema Club and Clean Bandit as headliners.

The festival takes place in Donegal's Bundoran every year; a uniquely Irish haunt which has sold-out tickets weeks before the festival over the last four years.

Now they've added major names like Jax Jones, The Magician, Wild Youth, Hermitage Green, The Sugarhill Gang with Grandmaster Melle Mel & Scorpio, Le Boom, Jerry Fish, Bitch Falcon, Trojan Sound System, Kormac and Inhaler to the lineup.

The festival has seen major artists grace their stages, like luminaries Dizzee Rascal, Paul Weller, Tinie Tempah, Rudimental, Bastille and Seasick Steve.

It began way back in 2008 as an after-party for a big surfing competition, and now hosts a range of the world's top skateboarders, BMX bikers and beach sporting heroes.

Festival director Ray O’Donoghue couldn't contain his excitement about 2019's eclectic line-up, and we don't blame him.

He said: "We’re delighted with this year’s lineup and with our new additions. We think it is by far our strongest lineup yet! There’s something for everyone there, from Sigrid to The Sugarhill Gang, Two Door Cinema Club to Jax Jones  and everything else in between."

He continued;

"We’ve sold out the last 4 years so we expect this year to be no different. We’ve even got a surprise or two still left up our sleeves. We literally can’t wait until the summer."

The summer festival will take place from June 21 until June 23 in 2019, and early bird tickets have already been snapped up.

Day and weekend tickets are still available now from Ticketmaster outlets, priced at €119.90 for three days non-campsite and €149.90 to include four nights of camping banter.

Limited single day tickets are available from€54.90 + VIP Upgrades for €50, if you head to the Sea Sessions website you can catch them now before they're gone.

Feature image: Instagram/@sea_sessions

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Legendary talk show hosts Graham Norton and Alan Carr have signed on to be celebrity judges on RuPaul's Drag Race UK this year, and we're GAGGING with excitement.

The pair will appear as rotating resident judges every week, and will join RuPaul, Michelle Visage and a celebrity guest judge.

Both iconic hosts are major fans of the iconic show, which has been a global worldwide hit since it first aired back in 2009.

Let's not forget that Norton actually appeared on the original version of All Stars season two back in 2016.

He said he has been a fan of the show forever; "Becoming part of the Drag Race family makes me ridiculously happy! I can't wait to see what the UK drag queens bring to the party, but they better werk!" 

In the video announcement on Twitter today, Graham joked "maybe this is what the UK's good at."

For the Drag Race UK grand finale, both Norton and Carr will appear on the judging panel.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Alan Carr met Ru-Paul when he appeared on his chat show Alan Carr's Chatty Man but has been a fan for years of the pop culture phenomenon.

"Wow! To be sat next to Michelle Visage and Mama Ru as a guest judge on possibly one of my all-time favourite shows EVER is a dream come true," he said.

"I can't wait to see what the UK Queens have got in store – it's going to be sickening! *does death drop*"

The Emmy award-winning show will be coming to BBC Three this year, it was announced in December.

Feature image: Gay Times

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The Love Island couples are breaking everyone's hearts at the moment with what feels like CONSTANT break-ups, one after another.

A string of break-ups in quick succession from Megan Barton Hanson and Wes Nelson,  Josh Denzel and Kaz Crossley , and even winners Jack and Dani had brief split back in December. News has just broken that Zara McDermott and Adam Collard have parted ways.

Zara posted a heartfelt message to her Instagram which expressed how she felt she wasn't enough for her former boyfriend, writing;

"I am heartbroken to announce that Adam and I have parted ways,' she wrote. "I love him very much and will always have a special place in my heart for him & our time spent together. I have tried so hard to be the best person I can possibly be and to make it work."

Instagram / @zara_mcdermott

The couple reportedly decided to break up following Adam's party-boy ways since the show ended.

McDermott finished the emotional statement by saying; "Sometimes in life, you just aren't enough for someone, no matter what you do for them or how much you try to be. For everyone asking if I am okay, I dont know that I am. But I know that soon I will be."

Dani Dyer and Jack Fincham are now officially the last pair standing.

Now the viewers are speculating that the ITV reality show implore the couples to sign a 'six-month contact' which prevents them from breaking up until at least six months after the show ends.

It was recently reported that series champs Dani Dyer and Jack Fincham had called time on their relationship in December, but reunited just a few days later. Many people believed back then that it was all a publicity stunt to gain more attention…

It was then alleged a few days ago that the pair had taken a break following Jack's admission that he took a class A drug on nights out with friends, only for them to show PDA after Dani's return from Tanzania. 

Josh Denzel and Kaz Crossley split earlier this month, despite Kaz insisting she "still loves" 26-year-old Josh. Suspish.

Megan Barton Hanson split with Wes Nelson following his introduction to Dancing On Ice partner Vanessa Bauer. It was claimed that Hanson was jealous at how much time Wes was spending with his partner, and tensions rose.

The pair released a statement after ending their seven-month relationship, even using the famous phrase 'consciously uncoupling' and announcing that they would co-parent their hamster. (GAS)

However, fans are calling bullsh*t, insisting that the entire thing is a hoax. Especially since Megan showed up to Dancing on Ice that same evening.

 One social media user wrote;

"Does Love Island  have a contract with the couples that they have to stay together for six months after the show ends? They're all breaking up this month…"

Hmmm, we need to get our detective hats on for this one, because something fishy is 100 percent afoot.

Another fan of the show commented that suddenly, their jobs just HAPPEN to get in the way of their romance:

Kaz Crossley spoke about her split on Monday's Capital Breakfast Show, she shut down rumours that her and Josh's romance was fake: "Basically when we met each other on the show everything was so perfect."

She confessed: "I definitely was in love. Definitely. I'm still in love. We still have a lot of love for each other."

Yet the online speculations keeps gaining heat, seeing as boyfriends are being dropped "like flies" according to one Twitter fan:

What do you think of the conspiracy theory?

We have to admit, the whole thing is pretty believable. Yet… the show's runners-up, Laura Anderson and Paul Knops, split up WITHIN the six month limit:

Laura rubbished accusations that her relationship was false, telling people to be "more kind" considering "Love Island relationships are REAL."

Image: Instagram/@lauraanderson1x

The show is essentially an eight-week summer sunshine binge, and we all want to believe that it's all real but let's be honest: it ain't so.

Do we think that the couples are contractually obliged to stay together when the show ends?

We may never know the answer to this INCREDIBLY important question, but we've contact the FBI, MI5 and CIA to get on the case. We need answers, people.

Feature image: standard.co.uk

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Many of us have the unpleasant experience under our belt of dating an absolute snake. You know the one; the eternal f*ckboi who most likely ghosts you after slithering into your heart, who can't commit to a relationship and even cheats.

He's fluent in Parseltongue and has been a core member of the Slytherin Quidditch team for years.

His best mate is Draco Malfoy, he calls him 'Malfy' for short, and goes golfing with his dad Lucius every Saturday.

harry potter GIF

He wears Taylor Swift's snake print Reputation merch, but won't listen to her empowering tunes. He makes you pay for both of you on nights out, and flirts with your mates.

He gaslights the crap out of you, and gives double-handed compliments that are disguised as compliments.

Most likely he says he wants more space, even though you barely see him, and tries to argue that your relationship is casual instead of serious, no matter what the circumstances are.

Sounds familiar? Well, we've got some hiss-worthy revenge for you, best served cold.

slithering jack quaid GIF by Vinyl

A competition is being run by Wild Life Sydney to name their brown snakes after a douchebag ex, and requires the entrants to say why their ex best deserves it. GENIUS.

The programme also asks participants to donate to it's conservation fund, to help Australian native wildlife by funding research and education. It's a Valentine's Day treat, if you ask us.

The zoo's general manager, Mark Connolly, said that the competition could give "someone unlucky in love … something else to celebrate on Valentine’s Day this year."

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The winner gets to have a snake named after your slimy ex-conquest, and also an annual pass to visit your trashy snake in the zoo.

How adorable…the winner will be announced on Valentines Day to fit the romantic mood.

We can think of a fair few names to be put forward of men who have MAJORLY hissed us off, what about you ladies? 

Feature image: News24

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Beauty pageants such as Miss Universe attract a hell of a lot of negative attention daily, especially since Donald Trump owns one. Anything he owns usually turns to ash, TBF.

From those who feel it's concepts are totally outdated for the modern world, to those expressing concern over how problematic the notion of 'swimsuit bodies' is, pageants are often in the spotlight for scandals.

Once again, pageants are in the media after Miss USA, Sarah Rose Summers, was filmed mocking foreign beauty queens and even IMITATING THEIR ACCENTS at the Miss Universe competition.

Can you believe?

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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This is beyond clueless. 

The sexism surrounding the pageants is bad enough, without the racism added to the pile of problems. Summers can be heard saying;

"Miss Cambodia is here and doesn’t speak any English, and not a single other person speaks her language. Could you imagine?"

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Sarah Rose Summers (@sarahrosesummers) on

Summers then went on to mock yet another contestant, Miss Vietnam, saying:

"She’s so cute and she pretends to know so much English."

Not only did she mock her for her lack of English (as if Summers knows anything about being bilingual), she then made fun of how Miss Vietnam spoke.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Sarah Rose Summers (@sarahrosesummers) on

Summers has since posted an apology after the internet went absolutely mad at her, understandably.

She wrote:

"In a moment where I intended to admire the courage of a few of my sisters, I said something that I now realise can be perceived as not respectful, and I apologise."

I mean, why did she say 'can be perceived' as disrespectful? It's straight up normalised racism, gal.

Own up to it, and check yourself, Regina George. *sigh*

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To celebrate the launch of the Skin Nerd’s new book ‘The Skin Nerd- Your straight talking guide to feeding, protecting and respecting your skin‘, we have a fabulous Nerdie prize to give away.

The lucky winner will receive a copy of The Skin Nerd Book, the much sought after Cleanse Off Mitt and also a membership to the Nerd Network.

The membership includes a thorough, 360 degree approach, virtual skin consultation along with access to the Skin Nerd Store and their online community.

To be in with a chance to win, enter your details below.

This competition is now closed. Congratulations to Aisling McGann who has won the fabulous Nerdie Bundle, we have emailed you about your prize. 

Thank you to everyone who entered. 

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A 4 night stay for two in the Big Apple for free? Eh, hell to the yes. 

Fancy strolling down 5th Avenue for your big summer adventure? Will NoLIta of George's St are giving you a chance to fulfil your big city dreams this week. 

Inspired by the suaveness and sophistication of New York's Little Italy, NoLIta is throwing Dublin's biggest Fourth of July party.

It's so big, in fact, that they needed a week to spread out all the amazing celebrations they have planned. 

Starting on Monday July 2nd, each night is themed for a different aspect of NYC. We start off with a delicious evening in Little Italy, followed by the Best of Brooklyn, July the 4th party, a Sex and the City night, and Summer in NYC. As well as themed cocktails and menu, the celebration of the 4th will also include a massive Beer Pong Championship.

We are so there. 

To enter the draw for the big trip, all you have to do is sign a NoLIta receipt with your name and number and pop it in their giant Uncle Sam's Hat. 

The lucky winner will be announced on Saturday July 7th with confetti canons, DJs, drinks, dancing and a big fat plane ticket. 

 

A post shared by NoLIta Dublin (@nolitadublin) on

So go on, glam up your week with a little bit of America, right here in Dublin! 

To find out more about NoLIta's 4th of July event series, see the Facebook event page here.

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Nope, we're not having it. 

This is the new Ugliest Dog in the World- Zsa Zsa, a nine-year-old English bulldog. I'm sorry, but that dog is adorable. 

When news of this broke, Twitter erupted with a tsunami of outraged tweets in response to Zsa Zsa's new title. Users did not seem to agree with the outcome of the contest and were quick to jump to Zsa Zsa's defence, claiming that she was, in fact, "the cutest."

Agreed.

The proud owner, Megan Brainard of Anoka, Minnesota, will receive $1,500(€1300) for the winning the contest. 

Zsa Zsa's human is loving the overwhelmingly positive response that Zsa Zsa was receiving on Twitter. According to The Star Tribune, she said that "“She is just so ugly, she’s beautiful." 

Preach. 

While the dogs are not the most aesthetically-pleasing, Twitter really rallied behind them, showering them with love –  whoever said that lolling tongues, squished faces and hairless bodies weren't cute?!

We can all agree that though she may be a winner of the Ugly Dog Crown, Zsa Zsa is the cutest ugly dog we have ever seen?! 

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Yas, queen. 

Dublin's annual Pride parade is on Saturday 30th of June and we cannot wait. Glitter: check. Flags: check. Unconditional love and support for our LGBTQ+ family and friends: double check. 

We're all about the festivities of Pride week, but do you reckon that you and your friends deserve a spot at the front and centre of the parade?  

Well, Dublin Bus has the Proudest Bus in Dublin! To honour Pride week Dublin Bus have unveiled not one, but two, Pride buses decked out in the Pride colours. 

Now they're offering you, their lovely customers, the chance for you and three friends to win spaces on the rainbow bus. All you have to do is go to the Dublin Bus Facebook or Twitter pages (@dublinbusnews) and tag three people you want to bring with you; it’s as simple as that!

They're so sound. 

"We all know our families and friends love us unconditionally, supporting us through thick and thin, whether it’s a quiet word, a wink or an arm around the shoulder," said a spokesperson for Dublin Bus. 

"This year Dublin Bus wants to celebrate these proud families and friends across Dublin and their LGBTQ siblings, parents, partners and pals by giving them a special experience at the top of the Dublin Pride Parade."

The parade this year will be led by  Grand Marshal Sara Phillips, Chair of Transgender Equality Network Ireland (TENI), Taoiseach Leo Varadkar along with Lord Mayor Mícheál MacDonncha and is expected to draw crowds of up to 30,000 people. 

This isn't the first time Dublin Bus has shown it's support to the LGBTQ+ community. It made headlines last year by launching comprehensive Workplace Gender Transition Policy and Guidelines. The policy shows employees and management of Dublin Bus how to provide a welcoming and supportive environment for employees transitioning.

Comprised in consolation with TENI, Phillips praised the move,calling it “one of the most progressive policies on transgender inclusion in the workplace.”

Dublin Bus has also been named one of the most progressive for inclusivity and supporting diversity among its workforce and was previously named a GLEN (Gay & Lesbian Equality Network) Diversity Champion.

So what are you waiting for? Get your Pride on with thanks to Dublin Bus! 

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